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What Sleep Position Is Best To Reduce Snoring?

Sleep position is an important factor in reducing snoring. It is one part of a larger factor called sleep hygiene that can be addressed to reduce snoring. Sleep hygiene includes sleep position, regular sleep habits, avoidance of alcohol or sedatives before bed, allergy management, and staying hydrated. Sleep position is critical for many reasons.

Lying Flat

Lying flat with your head equal to your stomach rather than elevated higher than your stomach generates more snoring. This flat position will increase nasal congestion as there is a transfer of fluid from your lower body to your face. Nasal congestion and associated mouth breathing increase snoring. Lying flat also makes the diaphragm have to work harder to expand the lungs. This increases the speed of the airflow through the upper airway creating more vibration and a tendency to collapse the airway.

When we lie flat, it is also harder to fully expand our lungs resulting in lower oxygen concentration in the blood. This increases sleep apnea and can result in loud “catch up” snores at the end of an apnea episode.

Lying on your back

Lying on your back can dramatically increase snoring as it allows gravity to pull the tongue back towards the back wall of the throat, as well as towards the soft palate and uvula. The closer these structures are to each other, the more contact they have with each other and the more noise is made.

Lying on your back also makes it more likely that your mouth will open, allowing the jaw and associated tongue to fall back into the airway.

Using a soft pillow

A soft pillow creates the tendency for the person to tuck their chin in as they sleep. A tucked chin pushes the jaw and tongue back into the throat and also increases snoring.

Best Sleeping Position

The best position can be created by pillow systems, like the Medcline system. This combines all important aspects as the head is above the stomach. It holds the person on their side to slightly prone, and the pillow is firm as well.

Pay attention to sleep position, as well as all aspects of sleep hygiene, to improve the quality of your sleep, as well as your bed partner’s sleep.

Schedule a Consultation

If your sleep position alone does not help your snoring, schedule a consultation with Dr. Slaughter.  He will perform an in-depth evaluation of your snoring and determine the cause of the snoring.  A treatment plan can then be developed.   Contact us today at 512.601.0303 to schedule an appointment!

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